Peace & Justice

This is the blog of the Commission on Peace and Justice for the Roman Catholic Diocese of Albany, New York.

Monday, March 23, 2009

Oscar Romero

Kevin Clarke writes about Archbishop Oscar Romero in the March issue of U.S. Catholic magazine:

One year shy of 30 years ago on March 24, 1980, standing before the altar of a small hospital chapel, Archbishop Oscar Arnulfo Romero of El Salvador held up his hands during his last Mass, consecrating this body and blood before his brothers and sisters. He was gunned down a day after pleading with Salvadoran soldiers to “stop the repression” and halt the killing of their brothers and sisters—and just a few weeks after he begged U.S. President Jimmy Carter to cease sending America’s murderous foreign aid into his small nation. Romero certainly understood that his words in those last weeks and days would be his own death warrant.

It’s hard to celebrate 29th anniversaries, the 20th and 25th having barely passed, and the 30th coming up so soon in a much more numerically satisfying fashion. So why acknowledge this awkward year at all? Why not wait another 12 months to commemorate the murder of this good man? Because in this 29th year since the brutal murder of Romero, El Salvador itself has likewise reached an awkward appointment, its own great moment of transition.

The rest of this article can be read here.